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View Full Version : Hotshoe Flash - which?


Ami Yuy
12-05-2005, 08:35 PM
So far I have either just not used my flash, or used it only when necessary. Since it's an in-camera one it's especially not fun, but still better than some I've used in point-and-shoots.

I'm thinking that my next piece of equipment could be a hotshoe flash, since I'm not ready to step up (pocket-book wise) to a D-SLR yet.

Right now I have a Nikon Coolpix 8700 (http://www.dpreview.com/reviews/specs/Nikon/nikon_cp8700.asp) (8 megapixels, 8x zoom, SLR-like) and love it. It does have the ability to use a hotshoe flash, and since I'd most likely still be able to use whatever one I get with both this camera and whatever camera I upgrade to in the future, I see it as a pretty good investment.

So, since I pretty much am clueless in this area, what hotshoe flashes are the best? And why?

I do mainly portrait/cosplay photography, if that has any bearing on it.

shiroin
12-06-2005, 02:23 AM
the Nikon SB-800 is something you will not regret for sure
but if you are low on budget then try the SB-600 ^^

skypirate
12-06-2005, 06:25 PM
So, since I pretty much am clueless in this area, what hotshoe flashes are the best? And why?

I do mainly portrait/cosplay photography, if that has any bearing on it.

I agree with shiroin, a dedicated flash like the Nikon SB-800 and SB-600 are going to be extremely good choices for your current and future camera.

You will see immediate benefits from being able to bounce the flash, TTL communication between camera and flash and tilt/swivel for the portrait work you mentioned.

Being able to swivel the flash is really helpful, if not essential, for vertical portraits. If you skimp on this, you'll probably end up having to drop about $125 for a bulky flash bracket and off camera cord later.

Looking at the the chart on this page link below, it would appear that the 8700, which is a cool camera, doesn't get to apply many of the TTL capabilities. Maybe that next camera will.

http://www.mir.com.my/rb/photography/hardwares/classics/NikonF5/Flash/SB600/index.htm

If you wanted to go the economy non-dedicated route, the SunPak 383 would probably be the way to go.

Rechargable Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH) is the way to go on batteries. Alkaline batteries take too long to recycle the flash.

Good luck on your purchase.

Efecss
12-09-2005, 08:58 AM
A hotshoe is to get an even flash all around your subject. basically, to wipe away shadows. (Atleast, that's what I remember my photography instructor telling me.) It takes out some depth and features.

If you can go to a photography store and ask to see if you can use one, check it out before buying. But, like with other things, it's up to your style.

shiroin
12-10-2005, 01:13 AM
go buy one now!
whether its s sb-600 or a sb-800...

I just recently borrowed a Canon 380EX
because of it being Canon, I am unable to use any of the TTL features
on my D70s its just a dummy flash.

But I tell you, its still super amazing compare to the built-in flash

If you want I can show you some examples ^^

Efecss
12-10-2005, 02:20 AM
Okay, re-reading this, I think I'm thinking about the wrong thing.

I thought a hotshoe was a flash ring around the lense.

Now that I think about it, it's kind of a flash protector.

Sorry, been a while since I heard of one.

jtnishi
12-10-2005, 04:20 PM
Okay, re-reading this, I think I'm thinking about the wrong thing.

I thought a hotshoe was a flash ring around the lense.

Now that I think about it, it's kind of a flash protector.

Sorry, been a while since I heard of one.
Actually, hotshoe in this case refers to the connector on top of most SLRs for flashes. It's called hot because it's a live connector, versus being a dummy, just for holding a flash that still has to be connected via cable.. Probably more correctly, the flash should just be called an (active) external flash, since that would also account for cable connected flashes. But since modern SLRs use that style of connector, instead of the old style cable connector, that's why the name.

And I have no opinion for Nikon, though I think Sigma also makes their DG-200 Super for Nikon as well. It's a bit overkill though for most people, myself included, though I have one for my Canon XD. At $200, it's relatively reasonably priced if you can actually find a way to use all those features. I'm just hoping to figure them out myself over the mid to long term. ^^;;

Cicada
12-17-2005, 02:23 PM
the Nikon SB-800 is something you will not regret for sure
but if you are low on budget then try the SB-600 ^^
+1 to this